在臺讀書美國學生被迫離開台灣 訴說真實心聲|Foreign students pulled out of Taiwan universities amid outbreak

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【看英文中國郵報學英文】透過大學的交換計畫,待在台灣讀書的美國學生被迫離開台灣,這項突如其來的要求違反部分學生意願。

American students studying abroad through their American colleges in Taiwan are being forced to leave Taiwan, in some cases against the students’ wishes.

當美國宣布國內感染2019新型冠狀病毒(COVID-19,俗稱武漢肺炎)的死亡人數達100人時,各學校即發布這項命令。根據CNN報導,美國境內武漢肺炎確診案例超過5,800人,針對美國國內病毒檢驗的批評聲浪不斷。

This comes as the United States has officially reported its 100th death. The number of cases has surpassed 5,800 according to CNN, but testing in the United States has received repeated criticism.

一百萬名美國人只有125人已經接受新冠肺炎病毒檢測,而南韓每一百萬人之中有5,000人已接受檢測,相較起來差異懸殊。

Only 125 per 1 million Americans have been tested for COVID-19. This contrasts with South Korea who has tested over 5,000 per every 1 million citizens.

因為在美國接受新冠病毒檢驗不一定免費、普遍性也不高,實際確診人數很可能比目前政府提供的數字還要高出許多,而許多民眾可能已經染疫,在不知情的情況下將病毒散播出去。

Since testing in the United States is not necessarily free or widespread, the number of cases is likely much higher with many citizens likely having the disease and spreading it unknowingly.

此外,美國對於新冠肺炎的防疫措施較缺乏系統、沒有秩序。

Furthermore, in the United States, the coronavirus response has been haphazard and unsystematic.

若是美國政府持續提出建議卻沒有最後執行辦法,即交由各州、郡自行頒布政策,實施自主隔離措施、關閉學校、進行檢疫等 – 例如德州有254個郡,而各州防疫措施不一致,導致目前病毒持續擴散。

As long as the US government continues to make suggestions instead of executive decisions, it is up to each state and county to enforce quarantines, close schools, and conduct testing—Texas has 254 counties for example. This has left an inconsistent approach to coronavirus that has so far failed to contain the spread.

在這樣的背景下,在台美國學生被迫離開台灣,感覺好像他們被丟到危險之中。

With this background in mind, American students being forced to leave Taiwan feel like they are being thrown into danger.

來自美國紐約的學生Nancy表示,「我家鄉所在的郡確診人數是台灣的三倍之多,而我家鄉所在的州則有10倍那麼多。這裡比較安全!為什麼他們要逼迫我回去?而且,我會和其他上千名來自世界各國的人一起等待通關,關在密閉空間8小時,甚至更久。」

“My county has 3 times as many cases as all of Taiwan, and my state has over 10 times as many cases.

It’s safe here! Why are they forcing me to go back? Plus, I would have to stand in customs for 8 hours or more with thousands of people from all over the world in a confined space.

「這根本和我們應該做的(隔離)完全背道而馳」Nancy的發言引起其他受訪學生的強烈共鳴。

It’s literally the opposite of what we are supposed to be doing,” says Nancy, a student from New York. Her sentiment is repeated across all interviewed students.

問及為什麼學生們的母校要讓他們去一個比台灣更危險的地方,許多學生受訪者表示,因為學校並不知道該怎麼做,就只是照著規定走。

When asked why their schools would make them go to a country that is more dangerous than Taiwan, many said it was because the schools did not know what to do and were just following protocol.

來自加州在麻薩諸塞州讀書的Bryan表示,「當我收到學校的email要我回家時,信裡的用字遣詞就像大量發信給各地讀書的學生,其中大多數都在歐洲。根本沒有討論的餘地,也沒有考量台灣的狀況。」

“When I received my email saying I had to go home, the language was written like a mass-email to all study abroad students, most of whom are in Europe.

There was no room for discussion. There was no consideration for the situation in Taiwan,” says Bryan, a student from California studying in Massachusetts.

「大家都在關心我的健康安全,但現在回家正是最糟的選項。學校列出所有理由,但根本都不足以支撐、解釋為什麼我應該離開台灣。」

“Everyone was talking about my health and my safety, but going home is the worst possible thing for that. Leaving Taiwan is counterintuitive to the reasons my school listed for why I should leave.”

Caitlyn的學校位在華盛頓哥倫比亞特區,她很開心可以簽署免責條款待在台灣,但她並未完全信任學校。

Caitlyn, who attends a university in Washington D.C., was happy to hear she could sign a liability waiver to stay in Taiwan, but that her school had not fully won back her trust.

「條款內的用字遣詞讓我有種罪惡感,好像我在對抗學校,違逆他們的好意。條款有種『我告訴過你了』的語氣,好像如果我真的生病了,我的學校有試圖幫助我但我拒絕配合。但是我的家鄉目前已經封鎖3週了!為什麼覺得現在回去會比較安全?」

“The wording in the form made me feel guilty like I was defying my school and their best wishes. There was an ‘I told you so’ tone where if I did get sick, my school tried to help me but I refused to listen. But my hometown is currently in a 3-week lockdown! Why would it be safer to go back?”

訪問到在台灣處理海外就學事務不願具名的員工,他們支持這些學生,同時分享他們對於美國大學採取這項措施的觀點。

When interviewing a staff member for study abroad in Taiwan who wishes to remain anonymous, they supported students’ sentiments while also adding perspective for the decisions by many U.S. universities.

「我對於讓學生留在台灣從來沒有意見,但我的確有提出所有能支持學生的相關資料。待在這裡滿合理的。很多學校仍然說『不行』。我覺得他們只是照著現有規範行動,但部分學校從來沒有想過,在目前這樣特別的情況下這些規範是否合乎時宜。」

“I never argued to keep students in Taiwan, but I did present all the information which argued for the students. It just makes sense to stay here. That said, some schools still said ‘no.’ I think they are simply following the protocols put in place, but some of them never asked if they were appropriate for this current and unusual situation.”

這名員工補充道,「當病毒疫情在亞洲延燒,尚未對美國造成影響時,在台灣沒有人回家。今天在台灣的狀況和當時沒有不同,但一系之間美國開始恐慌,而現在學生們都要離開了?」

尊重當事人隱私,已經將學生名字變更。

The staff member also added: “When the virus was in Asia and not in the US, no one in Taiwan went home. The situation today isn’t any different here, but suddenly there is panic in the US and now the students have to leave?”

*names have been changed to respect students’ privacy

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